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Old 11-20-2013, 10:47 AM   #1
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Upgrades to my Motorhome

I have been making a lot of changes and upgrades to our 2001 National Marlin 390 DP over the last couple of months. These include an additional new bath area sink, new window valance coverings, new Samsung RF197 fridge, new engineered oak wood flooring and new carpet in some areas and new to me front curtains.

For those that are interested in these changes, I have created a collection of photos at Flickr.com

Flickr: zzjea's Photostream

Choose "Sets" from the menu bar just above the photos and you will see all the photos arranged in groups of work done. If you have any issues viewing let me know since this is the first time I've set this up. If you have questions about the work I did, I will try to answer those too.

I did all the work myself and it turned out pretty well. The engineered flooring is probably not as good as Ernie Eckberg's work, but I did not use any quarter round so I am happy with it. May not do another one though. One is probably enough. Floor segments are glued down. I took all of the old blue carpet out and replaced all but the slide with hardwood. Some of the "Valance Redo" photos show the old blue carpet. I'm not too good on before photos as I get an idea to do something and jump right in and then I think about photos after beginning.

We went camping a week ago and really enjoyed our 'new' rig.

My next projects are new travetine tile back splash in kitchen, and wainscoting in dining area. Will add photos later for those.

John
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Old 11-20-2013, 11:50 AM   #2
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WOW! John, that's a LOT of work! Good job!
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Old 11-20-2013, 12:16 PM   #3
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I usually reserve this comment for folks showing us there newest rigs but you did so much it is like new, so....


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Old 11-20-2013, 12:16 PM   #4
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Nice upgrades John. We have done some to our coach as well, best two being MCD shades throughout, and Samsung res fridge.
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Old 11-20-2013, 12:20 PM   #5
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Very nice. I wish I were half as handy. You for hire?

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Old 11-20-2013, 01:14 PM   #6
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Thanks for all the feedback.

I'm very glad I did it and more glad that the heavy stuff is done. And NO, I'm not for hire.... LOL

At 71 I need a few projects to keep me busy when I'm not playing golf. The MH seems to fill that need. And then we can also enjoy it while getting away from it all. When we go camping during the week, we and the hosts are about the only ones there. It's pretty nice having an entire campground, lake, etc. to yourself.

Happy Trails

John
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Old 11-20-2013, 03:27 PM   #7
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Really nice job on all parts. Definitely appreciate the pics. Better then a thousand words. Looking at the Samsung to put in this winter along with a higher toilet and a couple other jobs.

Best wishes on jobs well done.
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Old 11-20-2013, 03:45 PM   #8
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Great job, everything looks terrific. The pictures tell the story.
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Old 11-20-2013, 03:57 PM   #9
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Looking good! Is that the furnace under the refrigerator? Did you relocate it? How did you get that big Frig into your coach?

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Old 11-20-2013, 07:53 PM   #10
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Looking good! Is that the furnace under the refrigerator? Did you relocate it? How did you get that big Frig into your coach?

Stano
Yes, the furnace is in its original spot, was not moved. The old Dometic was above it but there was more space there. I lowered the fridge area so it fit vertically. There was just enough room by using a 1/4" steel plate for a floor for the fridge.

I took the doors off the fridge and it just squeezed in. The Samsung RF197xxx is a counter-depth unit at around 24" without the doors and about 27" with them. It is doable if you are patient and some strong bodies to lift and push.

John
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Old 11-20-2013, 10:14 PM   #11
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John, I have a question about your slide and how it moves on the new floor. My slide looks very similar to yours with the sofa and dinette. Do you have rollers under the slide? In my expedition there are no rollers. It's a very slick bottom that slides across the carpet as it moves in and out.
I would like to get rid of my carpet and do something similar to what you did. I'm just not sure how the slide would work sliding across that wood floor, seems like it would scratch or do damage to it.
Also there is the height issue, isn't the carpet a little thicker than some type of wood floor?
Your coach looks great, good job.
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Old 11-21-2013, 07:42 AM   #12
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John, I have a question about your slide and how it moves on the new floor. My slide looks very similar to yours with the sofa and dinette. Do you have rollers under the slide? In my expedition there are no rollers. It's a very slick bottom that slides across the carpet as it moves in and out.
I would like to get rid of my carpet and do something similar to what you did. I'm just not sure how the slide would work sliding across that wood floor, seems like it would scratch or do damage to it.
Also there is the height issue, isn't the carpet a little thicker than some type of wood floor?
Your coach looks great, good job.
In the section "Flooring Upgrade" on my Flickr site, you will see how it was done. My slide does NOT have rollers. There are 3 plastic "skids" on the front edge that ride along the top of the floor (that was carpet before). The reason for the skids is that the slide drops down into a lower position when fully extended. That makes the floor almost level between the slide and the main floor of the coach. That makes for a good floor but it will scratch a wood floor when moving in and out. Rollers would have added too much height to the slide and it would not be as level with the coach floor when extended. I'm sure that is why National built it that way and they did not foresee wood flooring in 2001.

You will notice there are several pieces of plastic material that were screwed to the plywood. These were placed directly in front of each skid. They are slightly higher than the 3/8" wood floor and tapered on the top edges. This allows the slide skids to ride up and over the leading edge of the new floor. The flooring will not compact like carpet so the edge would catch and tear the wood. Thus, I needed to raise the slide over the new floor. These plastic strips are covered up with the carpet overhang on the slide.

I did not put wood on the slide since it would be a very difficult transition and I needed the carpet to cover the plastic I had installed in front of the slide. The slide carpet piece is exactly the same size as the old one. I kept it so I could get an exact cut for the new carpet. I had someone put a binding on the front edge like the old one and it looks like a factory job after I installed it.

There are also 3 other pieces of plastic that were used to keep the slide leading metal edge from catching on the original sub floor. You may not have that issue but I had to engineer that solution when the problem showed up during testing. This may be a design issue with the National slide and you may have a different setup. Since you do not have rollers, yours might be similar to mine in that it drops down when extended to make a more level slide with the main floor.

However, the weight of the slide plus the weight of the hide-a-bed brings the skids down onto the flooring after about a foot or two when retracting the slide. The only sure solution to not scratching the flooring (wood or tile), is to use something like luxury vinyl planks that are used also for flooring. You will see in the photos the 3 planks in front of the slide. I put them there when I will retract the slide, and the slide skids move on the planks and not the flooring. When extended, I store the planks (usually under the couch seat cushions). I tried felt pads on the skids but they will pull off and then you will be sorry when the floor gets scratched. BTW, this is what Ernie Eckberg does when he encounters a slide with skids and new engineered wood flooring. He probably tests every installation to see if there will be any scratching issues before he begins by using wood scraps to see how the slide will work.

It was worth having to put the planks down and up to have continuous wood flooring. It's not a big deal and it only takes about 30 seconds to do it. I thought about putting carpet back in front of the slide so I wouldn't have to use the planks, but I'm very glad I did it this way as the floor is beautiful. We still put rugs down (as most wood floor owners do) to keep the dogs from sliding around so much, and it adds a homey look too.

I had a previous coach that had laminate wood floors and a slide with rollers and it still scratched the laminate. If any dirt or a grain of sand gets under the rollers, scratches will occur. Planks are a good idea even with rollers over wood or vinyl tile.

Hope this helps and you can get a new floor in soon. You will love it.

John
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Old 11-21-2013, 08:48 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mmorgan View Post
John, I have a question about your slide and how it moves on the new floor. My slide looks very similar to yours with the sofa and dinette. Do you have rollers under the slide? In my expedition there are no rollers. It's a very slick bottom that slides across the carpet as it moves in and out.
I would like to get rid of my carpet and do something similar to what you did. I'm just not sure how the slide would work sliding across that wood floor, seems like it would scratch or do damage to it.
Also there is the height issue, isn't the carpet a little thicker than some type of wood floor?
Your coach looks great, good job.
BTW, you can see the planks while retracted in the Flickr section "Completed and Camping". They do not get in the way when walking in the MH while the slide is in.
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Old 12-05-2013, 03:16 PM   #14
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Update

I just added travetine tile backsplash in the kitchen to the list of other upgrades I finished this summer and fall. You can see what I've done here:

http://flickr.com/photos/zzjea/sets

John
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